NAACP: Removing Bannon doesn’t change racism in WH
© Getty

The NAACP says it is pleased with the departure on Friday of former White House chief strategist Steve BannonStephen (Steve) Kevin BannonWeld 'thrilled' more Republicans are challenging Trump The specter of Steve Bannon may loom over 2020 Trump campaign Sunday shows - Trump's Epstein conspiracy theory retweet grabs spotlight MORE – but his resignation doesn't remedy President TrumpDonald John TrumpAlaska Republican Party cancels 2020 primary Ukrainian official denies Trump pressured president Trump goes after New York Times, Washington Post: 'They have gone totally CRAZY!!!!' MORE's defense of hate groups.

"The NAACP is glad to see Steve Bannon out of the White House,” Derrick Johnson, the group's interim president and CEO said in a statement.

"Ousting one key staffer, however, can’t erase the words used by President Trump this week in defense of domestic terrorists, neo-Nazis and white supremacists. President Trump provided permission for these hate groups to exist."

ADVERTISEMENT

Bannon, who left his role as executive chair of Breitbart News last year to serve as chief executive of Trump's campaign, was widely seen as a driving force behind the president's populist-nationalist agenda, and was accused by critics of pushing racist policies.

The NAACP also called on Trump to oust "the people who share Steve Bannon’s poisonous beliefs," including senior policy adviser Stephen MillerStephen MillerOvernight Defense: Trump hits Iranian central bank with sanctions | Trump meeting with Ukrainian leader at UN | Trump touts relationship with North Korea's Kim as 'best thing' for US California trip shows Trump doesn't always hate the media Trump court pick sparks frustration for refusing to answer questions MORE and national security aide Sebastian GorkaSebastian Lukacs GorkaPirro acknowledges suspension by Fox Judge orders White House to restore Playboy reporter's press pass Playboy correspondent suing White House for suspending press pass: 'I am provocative, and I am a smart aleck' MORE

Trump has faced mounting pressure in recent days to disavow hate groups after he appeared during a Tuesday news conference to equate white nationalists with counterprotesters who had turned out in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend to oppose them.

In that press conference, Trump also criticized those he called "alt-left" demonstrators, accusing them of violently confronting racist groups protesting the city of Charlottesville's decision to remove a Confederate statue from a park.

Trump's comments on the matter have reignited a national debate over Confederate statues and monuments and whether they should be removed from government buildings and public locations.